Shortly after Apple and Qualcomm's reconciliation statement was issued last week, Intel announced its withdrawal from the 5G smartphone base-band chip business. Today, there is news that Intel will continue to supply 4G chips this year, which means that 2019 iPhones may continue to use the company's chips.
According to Reuters Stephen Neils, Intel CEO Bob Swan commented on the smartphone baseband chip plan at the company's Q1 earnings conference in 2019. "Our expectation is that we will continue to supply 4,000 baseband chips throughout the year, including the iteration product of XMM 7660 baseband chips that will be launched during the fall back-to-school season." "
Given Swan's reference to the iteration of XMM 7660 chips, it is highly likely that the company will continue to supply chips for 2,019 iPhones. Because this time point is hardly the same for Apple's new iPhone as the high-speed base-band chip, even if it catches up, the end result is likely to be two suppliers to split Apple's orders.
As for next year, Apple is sure to launch the 5G iPhone, by which time at least all the flagship models will be converted to high-tech 5G baseband chips. Since Intel did not say it would not continue to supply 4G chips next year, it is likely that Apple's "old" models will continue to use Intel's products next year. Apple and Qualcomm signed a multi-year chip supply agreement last week, so the proportion of Intel chips in Apple products should be reduced year by year until Apple products enter the 5G era.
In addition, Intel CEO Bob Swan said in an interview with the Wall Street Journal that the settlement between Apple and Qualcomm led to the company's withdrawal from 5G business: "In view of the announcement made by Apple and Qualcomm, we assessed the prospects for profitability of providing (5G baseband chip) technology for smartphones and concluded that we could not see a way out. "